Growing Ja pa nese maples in the garden C
ontrary to popular belief, Japanese maples aren't acidloving plants and don’t need ericaceous soils. In fact, they easily adapt to a variety of soil and climate conditions. ● In general, they don’t attain great height, averaging 4-5m (13-16½ft) for upright varieties and 3m (10ft) for most of the dissectum group. ● They’re easy to plant as the root system isn't a deep tap root type. Instead, the roots will stay relatively shallow, therefore requiring regular irrigation. They don’t need vast amounts, but regular, uniform watering until established will make sure they happily carry on growing. Because of this shallow root system, Japanese maples are extremely successful being transplanted from pot to garden. Ideal conditions Avoid wet or swampy ground. Growth rate may be reduced in clay or sandy soils.
Work good-quality composted bark into soil. They love moist, very welldrained drained soil and cold winters. Coastal locations aren’t ideal – salt-laden winds can damage them. If you have one by the coast, regularly hose the foliage with clean water.
Fertiliser isn’t often needed, just a good, general, fertile soil is sufficient. However, an application of balanced fertiliser, such as Growmore, once a year in spring will be of benefit.
Maples cope well in sun, but green and pale reticulated varieties may need shade from the hottest part of the day. Red-purple varieties need plenty of strong sunlight during the day to boost their leaf colouration.
Japanese maples are winter hardy down to -20C (-4F) when the root system is established in
the ground, and a mulch applied on top of the soil.
Trim acers in the ground to shape from late January; late February in pots